Horror-game-to-TV adaptation The Last of Us ended its first season in triumph, captivating an audience of 8.2 million people, and the excitement around it hasn’t slowed since.
After the huge success of the gritty show and confirmation of season 2 in the pipeline, it begs the question: what other video games have been so successful, they have been turned into (not so successful) films or TV shows? The experts at Betway have scoured the internet to reveal some of the most notable:
1. Silent Hill
First, we have the horror franchise that took the gaming world by storm: Silent Hill by Konami. First released in 1999, the game wowed audiences across the globe with its eerie environments, foggy atmosphere and psychological challenges.
A smash hit, the series boasts a whopping 12 games across different consoles – from DLCs (downloadable content) to mini-games – meaning a screen adaptation was inevitable.
However, despite the success of the games, the 2006 Silent Hill film scored only 31% on the Rotten Tomatoes critics forum, with many complaining that while the visuals were intriguing, the dialogue and plot were hard to follow.
The second film, Silent Hill: Revelations’ audience reception was even bleaker, scoring only 8% on the critics’ forum on Rotten Tomatoes.
Next on the list of games so popular, they ended up with their own big-screen debut, is the Uncharted series by Naughty Dog. First released in 2007 and with the same developer behind The Last of Us, it is no surprise that these games were huge successes, with the final instalment (A Thief’s End) making $56M during its launch month.
However, the same could not be said for the 2022 Uncharted film, as it scored only 40% on Rotten Tomatoes. Despite this, what it lacked in good reviews, it made up for in impressive Box Office profits of $401.7 million.
While Holland was celebrated in his role, the same could not be said for Mark Wahlberg as the wise yet cynical ‘Sulley’, renowned for sarcastic put-downs and an air of superiority in the games. Injecting humour and likeability into the role may have seemed like a good idea to the actor, but it left fans of the game confused and unable to relate to the character.
3. The Witcher
The Witcher, a groundbreaking TV adaptation of the popular video game developed by CD Projekt, was produced by Netflix and released in 2019. The original video game, first released in 2007, was quickly acclaimed and won numerous awards, including the Roleplaying Game of the Year award from The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences in 2008. The TV adaptation featured the iconic song ‘Toss a coin to your Witcher’.
First released as a Netflix original TV show in 2019, the anticipation from fans was palpable, allowing the series to boast the title of ‘most watched first series ever’ with 76 million households tuning in.
Equipped with a star-studded cast and with the titular character played by previous Superman Henry Cavill, it is clear to see that the programme shows no signs of quieting down, with Netflix confirming a third season – sadly, without Cavill.
4. Resident Evil
A franchise with possibly the highest number of games, films, books and TV shows is Resident Evil, developed by Capcom in 1996. With a staggering 30 games in total, including remakes and spin-offs, it is safe to say that Resident Evil represents one of the most successful franchises ever made.
However, how successful were its on-screen adaptations? The first film was released in 2002 and received only 35% on Rotten Tomatoes… so not very. Despite this, it scored an above-average 6.6/10 on IMDB.
Much to fans’ frustration, films continued to be made (7 live-action and 3 animated) and continued to miss the mark. A recent article stated that “it shouldn’t be this hard to get Resident Evil films and shows right”– a musing encapsulated by the 2022 Netflix adaptation getting cancelled after just one season.